Quality really does matter. But maybe not how you’d expect.

The egg on the left is from an un-caged hen. See how the yolk is so golden, and -for lack of a better word- perky? The white, which you can’t see in this picture (because it’s already in my cake) was also really high quality, almost gelatinous in texture. This kind of egg makes for a really good cake.

The egg on the right is organic. And yet, it is just flopping there. It is pale. Bored. It had a runny white.  There is little that an egg like this can do to provide ‘lift’ to a cake.

My friend KellyAnn, who raises chickens, tells me that this difference is because free-range hens are able to forage for bugs. It’s the bugs in the hen’s diet that make for rich, golden eggs. Organic hens are often kept in pens that are little different from their conventionally raised sistren. They don’t get all the gross stuff in their diets, but they don’t get the nourishing stuff either.

If you want good eggs, go for cage free. Now if only KellyAnn and her chickens didn’t roost 3 hours away from here.